No fewer than 35 people on Wednesday cheated death as a tanker laden with fuel lost control at ever-busy Upper New Market road near Main Market Onitsha, Anambra state.
All though no life was lost but three people sustained various degrees of injury while about 10 vehicles including tricycles were smashed in what would be disastrous and bloody incident.
An eyewitness Mr. Jude Nwabah, a furniture maker along New Market road said the tanker was coming to discharge fuel at a filling station at Upper New Market road junction but reaching to the place, lost control and continued rolling down on one-way road at the new market road hitting and smashing cars and tricycles.
He said the driver of the vehicle tried a lot to control the tanker and stopped at the middle of the road close to another filling station posing danger to the residents, motorists and passersby at the time of filling this report.
“It was God that saved lives today, if not, terrible and bloody tragedy would have occurred along this place. I was in my workshop when I saw the tanker coming opposite one-way road, people were shouting, give way, make a change, brake failure, people were running but you know that the road is very busy many vehicle could not give way.
“As the tanker was moving, it hit and smash anything that blocked or stood on its way but the driver was struggling to control it, so after some distance, it suddenly stopped at the middle of the road but close to another fuel station which is also dangerous thing because of the content which may spark-off fire and explode” Nwabah stated.
One of the victims, a Keke operator Emenike Okwudi thanked God for saving his life, saying it was miraculous that when the tanker hit his Keke it fell down and all the passengers fell on the ground but none of them was wounded though his Keke was smashed.
“It was like film, all of a sudden I saw the tanker coming in front of us. So, as I was about to run of the road but due to busyness of the road I couldn’t and the tanker hit my Keke. I thank God that the tanker did not fall or was not in high speed when it happened, it would be bloody. God really saved the situation because had been the tanker fell and exploded it would be very disastrous” he state.
Meanwhile, the incident has caused serious gridlocks along New Market road out of main market, but the traffic officers and police were on ground to control traffic and divert vehicles.
At the time of filling this report the tanker was still parked at the middle of the road closed to another filling station under scorch sun posing danger.
There was no fire fighting vehicle and officials on standby in case of any eventuality. There was no effort to trans load the fuel to another tanker to clear the road or save looming danger.